THE RIGHT WAY TO A SORBET

Strawberry Sorbet

Strawberry Sorbet

With strawberries and sugar.

With just two ingredients, fresh strawberries and sugar, and the right way to make it, this is the perfect strawberry sorbet: crazily smooth in texture and bursting with strawberry flavour.

Most strawberry sorbet recipes ask you to blend the strawberries with the sugar, which leaves most of the sugar undissolved and makes the sorbet icy. Or to make a syrup to dissolve the sugar, which adds water to the sorbet and dilutes the strawberry flavour.

Our approach is different: we macerate the fruit with the sugar for a few hours, during which time the sugar gradually melts as it comes into contact with the moisture of the fresh strawberries.

That ensures that the sugar dissolves, which means a perfect sorbet body. And no water is added, which makes for a vibrant strawberry flavour.

or see:

The ingredients

Do not reduce or replace anything; everything is there for a reason.

Fresh strawberries: use fresh, juicy, in season strawberries. The taste of this strawberry sorbet will be determined by the taste of the strawberries themselves. So, if you want a fragrant, wonderful ice cream, so should your strawberries be.

Sugar: use regular sugar (white granulated sugar) or superfine (caster) sugar which is easier to dissolve.

Do not use any other sugar or sweetener, natural or artificial, liquid or powder, like honey, stevia, golden syrup, table sweeteners, confectioner’s sugar, etc.

Fresh strawberries: use fresh, juicy, in season strawberries. The taste of this strawberry sorbet will be determined by the taste of the strawberries themselves. So, if you want a fragrant, wonderful ice cream, so should your strawberries be.

Sugar: use regular sugar (white granulated sugar) or superfine (caster) sugar which is easier to dissolve.

Do not use any other sugar or sweetener, natural or artificial, liquid or powder, like honey, stevia, golden syrup, table sweeteners, confectioner’s sugar, etc.

Overview

This is a quick overview of the recipe. If you are new to ice cream making, do read the recipe before proceeding. 

Cut the strawberries in slices.

In a bowl put the strawberries with the sugar; stir well.

Leave them to macerate for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally.

A red syrup will begim to form

Put in the refrigerator overnight; or until completely cold.

Remove the strawberries from their syrup and put in the blender jug.

Blend the strawberries until smooth, then slowly pour in their syrup.

Churn the cold strawberry blend in your ice cream maker until nice and fluffy.

Put it in the freezer for a few hours to set. 

As soon as it sets, you can either serve it from the ice cream maker bowl or transfer it to a container and store it in the freezer.

The recipe

Strawberry Sorbet

Strawberry Sorbet

Ingredients:
Notes:

This recipe makes a 1.2 litre/quart ice cream mixture (before churning), perfect for ice cream makers with a capacity of 1.5 and up to 2 litres/quarts (like Cuisinart ice cream makers).

If you need to scale the ice cream mixture up or down, use this ratio of the ingredients (in weight only):

hulled strawberries 84.4%  / sugar 15.6 % 

in desired total weight of sorbet mixture.

For example, if you want to make 1000 g (approx. 1 litre) of sorbet mixture, you need:

• 1000 g x 84.4% = 844 g strawberries

• 1000 g x 15.6 % = 156 g sugar

 

A flexible rubber spatula is good for:
-wiping the bottom of the saucepan when you cook dairy on the stovetop.
-scraping residues from bowls, saucepans etc.

If you do not have one, we strongly encourage you to buy one, preferably a flexible one. 

Instructions
Plan ahead:

The strawberries must be fridge-cold before blending and churning, so prepare them (step 1) in advance (approx. 8 hours before) to give them time to chill in the refrigerator. 

If your ice cream maker has a removable freezer bowl, put it in the freezer for the whole time indicated by the manufacturer before churning, usually 24 hours.

Step 1: Macerate the strawberries

Slice the strawberries: with a sharp knife, cut the strawberries (1000 g; 35.3 oz) into clean, neat slices. No need to cut them very thin; just slice them to a thickness you feel comfortable with.

Mix the strawberries with the sugar: in a large bowl, put the strawberry slices and add the sugar (185 g; 6.5 oz). Stir with a rubber spatula, leaving the spatula in the bowl during the whole maceration process.

Macerate the strawberries: leave the strawberries to macerate at room temperature for 2-3 hours (or more if the strawberries are cold from the fridge). Stir every hour or as needed to help the sugar dissolve. Each time you stir, scrape the sugar that sits on the bottom and sides of the bowl and mix it in the strawberries. 

Step 2: Chill the strawberries

Make sure that all the sugar has dissolved: after 2-3 hours, a red syrup will form. Check the bottom of the bowl and if you see any sugar granules, give a vigorous, focused stir with the spatula, aiming to dissolve the sugar. It is important that all the sugar has dissolved before proceeding; if needed, leave them to macerate for one more hour or so.

Chill thoroughly: when all the sugar has dissolved, cover the bowl and put them in the refrigerator for 8 hours; or until completely cold. You can leave them in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

Step 3: Churn the sorbet

Blend the strawberries: with a slotted spoon, remove the cold strawberries from their syrup, and put them in the blender jug. Blend until smooth, pouring some strawberry syrup to get things going, if needed. When it is completely smooth, pour in the rest of the strawberry syrup and blend to combine.

Prepare the ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Churn: with the machine running, pour the cold strawberry blend through the canister and into the ice cream maker.

Leave to churn until fluffed up and steady; depending on your ice cream maker, this can take anywhere from 30-60 minutes.

This sorbet will expand and fluff up during churning. It is ready when it looks smooth and fluffy. The total churning time depends on your ice cream maker and could be anywhere from 30-70 minutes.

To evaluate if it is ready, lift a spoonful; it should be thick enough to stand on the spoon, but it will still be soft. If it looks watery or starts to melt the moment you spoon it, leave it to churn for longer.

In any case, if you feel doubts about the consistency, leave it to churn for ten minutes more. But beware: at this stage, do not expect it to be like store-bought sorbet; for now, it will be softer. It will firm up and become like store-bought sorbet only after it sets in the freezer. So, stop the ice cream maker when the sorbet is steady and fluffy, as described above.

Note that some ice cream makers are programmed to stop after a specific time, which doesn’t make sense because the sorbet may need to churn for more to reach its fullest potential. So, if you notice that your ice cream maker stops on its own and upon checking the sorbet, you find that it is sloppy instead of fluffy, try to turn the machine on again and leave it to churn until it reaches the desired texture.

Step 4: Put the sorbet in the freezer to set

Put in the freezer to set: before serving the sorbet or moving it to a container for storing, you have to put it in the freezer to set. To do so, turn off the ice cream maker and: 

· remove the removable freezer bowl (still filled with the sorbet) from the ice cream machine
· remove the paddle, scraping any sorbet attached to it back into the ice cream bowl 
· cover the ice cream bowl and place it in the freezer 
Setting time depends on many factors; see notes below for indicative times.

Serve or store: when it sets, you can serve it directly from the removable freezer bowl or transfer it to an airtight container for longer storage.

The setting time for the sorbet largely depends on the type of ice cream maker you use.

It can take :

  • 3-5 hours for removable freezer bowls (these are the ice cream maker bowls which you should pre-freeze before churning)
  • 1-2 hours for aluminium bowls (these are the bowls from compressor ice cream makers)

Note: the times given are indicative. Setting time depends on many factors.

Check it occasionally (approx. every 2 hours; or as needed) while it is in the freezer. The sorbet is ready when it has an internal temperature of about -10ºC / 14ºF. If you do not have a thermometer, to evaluate if the sorbet is set, insert a round tip knife into it, all the way to the bottom: 

  • when the sorbet is ready, it feels firm as you go down, but at the same time it is soft enough to insert the knife into it; it should have this same firm consistency from top to bottom.
  • not ready yet: it will feel hard on the top and softer as you go down
  • if left in the freezer for too long: it will be too hard for the knife to insert into it and too hard to scoop out of the ice cream bowl. Do not worry, though! Read right below how to soften it.

If the sorbet stays in the removable freezer bowl for too long, it will harden and be difficult to remove or serve.

To make it scoopable again, leave it in the refrigerator to soften. That can take:

  • anywhere from 4 to 10 hours for removable freezer bowls (the ones which need pre-freezing before churning)
  • 1-2 hours for aluminium bowls (these are the bowls from compressor ice cream makers)

(Note: the time given is indicative, time may vary depending on many factors, so do check it occasionally as it sits in the refrigerator.)

When the sorbet is easy to scoop (or it has an internal temperature of approx. -10°C / 14°F if you have a thermometer), you can transfer it to another container and store it in the freezer or serve it directly from the removable freezer bowl.

Straight after churning, the sorbet has a soft consistency and melts immediately upon contact with anything. This makes it impossible to serve or transfer to another container.

Putting it in the freezer after churning sets it and brings it to the right consistency, similar to that of an ice cream parlour’s.

Storing and serving

Storing: in the freezer for six months, covered well.

Scooping: this sorbet, like all artisanal sorbets, freezes hard in the long term. You can make it perfectly scoopable again by putting it in the refrigerator for 45-60 minutes until soft; or until its internal temperature reads -11°C / 12°F.

Instructions

The strawberries must be fridge-cold before blending and churning, so prepare them (step 1) in advance (approx. 8 hours before) to give them time to chill in the refrigerator. 

If your ice cream maker has a removable freezer bowl, put it in the freezer for the whole time indicated by the manufacturer before churning, usually 24 hours.

Slice the strawberries: with a sharp knife, cut the strawberries (1000 g; 35.3 oz) into clean, neat slices. No need to cut them very thin; just slice them to a thickness you feel comfortable with.

Mix the strawberries with the sugar: in a large bowl, put the strawberry slices and add the sugar (185 g; 6.5 oz). Stir with a rubber spatula, leaving the spatula in the bowl during the whole maceration process.

Macerate the strawberries: leave the strawberries to macerate at room temperature for 2-3 hours (or more if the strawberries are cold from the fridge). Stir every hour or as needed to help the sugar dissolve. Each time you stir, scrape the sugar that sits on the bottom and sides of the bowl and mix it in the strawberries. 

Make sure that all the sugar has dissolved: after 2-3 hours, a red syrup will form. Check the bottom of the bowl and if you see any sugar granules, give a vigorous, focused stir with the spatula, aiming to dissolve the sugar. It is important that all the sugar has dissolved before proceeding; if needed, leave them to macerate for one more hour or so.

Chill thoroughly: when all the sugar has dissolved, cover the bowl and put them in the refrigerator for 8 hours; or until completely cold. You can leave them in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

Blend the strawberries: with a slotted spoon, remove the cold strawberries from their syrup, and put them in the blender jug. Blend until smooth, pouring some strawberry syrup to get things going, if needed. When it is completely smooth, pour in the rest of the strawberry syrup and blend to combine.

Prepare the ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Churn: with the machine running, pour the cold strawberry blend through the canister and into the ice cream maker.

Leave to churn until fluffed up and creamy; depending on your ice cream maker, this can take anywhere from 30-60 minutes; read more in How do I know when the ice cream is ready in questions & troubleshooting below.

Put in the freezer to set: before serving the sorbet or moving it to a container for storing, you have to put it in the freezer to set. To do so, turn off the ice cream maker and: 

· remove the removable freezer bowl (still filled with the sorbet) from the ice cream machine
· remove the paddle, scraping any sorbet attached to it back into the ice cream bowl 
· cover the ice cream bowl and place it in the freezer 
Setting time depends on many factors; see notes below for indicative times.

Serve or store: when it sets, you can serve it directly from the removable freezer bowl or transfer it to an airtight container for longer storage.

Storing: in the freezer for six months, covered well.

Scooping: this sorbet, like all artisanal sorbets, freezes hard in the long term. You can make it perfectly scoopable again by putting it in the refrigerator for 45-60 minutes until soft; or until its internal temperature reads -11°C / 12°F.

This sorbet will expand and fluff up during churning. It is ready when it looks smooth and fluffy. The total churning time depends on your ice cream maker and could be anywhere from 30-70 minutes.

To evaluate if it is ready, lift a spoonful; it should be thick enough to stand on the spoon, but it will still be soft. If it looks watery or starts to melt the moment you spoon it, leave it to churn for longer.

In any case, if you feel doubts about the consistency, leave it to churn for ten minutes more. But beware: at this stage, do not expect it to be like store-bought sorbet; for now, it will be softer. It will firm up and become like store-bought sorbet only after it sets in the freezer. So, stop the ice cream maker when the sorbet is steady and fluffy, as described above.

Note that some ice cream makers are programmed to stop after a specific time, which doesn’t make sense because the sorbet may need to churn for more to reach its fullest potential. So, if you notice that your ice cream maker stops on its own and upon checking the sorbet, you find that it is sloppy instead of fluffy, try to turn the machine on again and leave it to churn until it reaches the desired texture.

The setting time for the sorbet largely depends on the type of ice cream maker you use.

It can take :

  • 3-5 hours for removable freezer bowls (these are the ice cream maker bowls which you should pre-freeze before churning)
  • 1-2 hours for aluminium bowls (these are the bowls from compressor ice cream makers)

Note: the times given are indicative. Setting time depends on many factors.

Check it occasionally (approx. every 2 hours; or as needed) while it is in the freezer. The sorbet is ready when it has an internal temperature of about -10ºC / 14ºF. If you do not have a thermometer, to evaluate if the sorbet is set, insert a round tip knife into it, all the way to the bottom: 

  • when the sorbet is ready, it feels firm as you go down, but at the same time it is soft enough to insert the knife into it; it should have this same firm consistency from top to bottom.
  • not ready yet: it will feel hard on the top and softer as you go down
  • if left in the freezer for too long: it will be too hard for the knife to insert into it and too hard to scoop out of the ice cream bowl. Do not worry, though! Read right below how to soften it.

If the sorbet stays in the removable freezer bowl for too long, it will harden and be difficult to remove or serve.

To make it scoopable again, leave it in the refrigerator to soften. That can take:

  • anywhere from 4 to 10 hours for removable freezer bowls (the ones which need pre-freezing before churning)
  • 1-2 hours for aluminium bowls (these are the bowls from compressor ice cream makers)

(Note: the time given is indicative, time may vary depending on many factors, so do check it occasionally as it sits in the refrigerator.)

When the sorbet is easy to scoop (or it has an internal temperature of approx. -10°C / 14°F if you have a thermometer), you can transfer it to another container and store it in the freezer or serve it directly from the removable freezer bowl.

Straight after churning, the sorbet has a soft consistency and melts immediately upon contact with anything. This makes it impossible to serve or transfer to another container.

Putting it in the freezer after churning sets it and brings it to the right consistency, similar to that of an ice cream parlour’s.

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